The world of virtual reality is growing quickly, and Facebook’s purchase of Oculus seem to affirm the notion that such products would be taking the digital market by storm. Despite the seemingly fading hype around Google Glass, Microsoft is pressing ahead with its very own delving, and at today’s keynote, has thrown its hat into the ring with the announcement of the HoloLens. Full details of this intriguing new holographic product can be seen after the fold.
Although, particularly after Glass, there’ll be some skepticism about the beautifully designed goggles, one has to consider the successes of Kinect before arriving at any definitive judgments. After all, the motion sensor came from nowhere to become one of the fastest-selling gadgets of all time, and as you’d expect, the software giant is rather buoyant about HoloLens.
So, what is it? Well, from a software aspect, it’s based upon Windows Holographic. It all sounds rather futuristic, and indeed it is. In a vaguely similar manner to comparable products, it brings the surrounding world to life with holograms, and whilst the likes of Glass are very much dependent on externals like the smartphone, HoloLens is a gadget in and of itself.
It contains all of the bits and pieces you’d expect to see in a smartphone or tablet, including its own CPU and graphics, while also including its very own holographic processor, and if you’re among the growing army of folks nonplussed bout Glass, we’d still hazard that HoloLens has more than piqued your interest.
When worn, everything you see is processed through a visor within the line of sight, which is, of course, see-through, and with a specialized sound infrastructure that lets you essentially hear holograms behind you, it would seem that Microsoft has left nothing to chance.
Where Glass seems to have no clear direction – Google continues to tout it as a product that could appeal to the consumer without any clear indication as to how – Microsoft is going for broke with the HoloLens, which it’s using to target both the enterprise market and the end user.
It’ll apparently be heavily focused on entertainment, with today’s demonstration showing how one may integrate the Microsoft-owned Minecraft experience into real-life spaces and environments, and even more excitingly, HoloLens will supposedly be ready begin to emerge within the time constraints of Windows 10.
Looking to truly bridge the gap between the virtual and physical worlds, this is arguably more exciting than Oculus Rift, Samsung Gear VR and Google Glass, and if you’ve been watching this developing arena with a keen interest, then I’m sure you’ll agree with our early assessment that Microsoft may have a game-changer on its hands here.
What do you make of the HoloLens? Be sure to leave your thoughts and comments below!